North Korea displays new missiles in military parade

Cheryl Sanders
April 17, 2017

North Korea staged a massive military parade on Saturday to mark the 105th birthday of late state founder Kim Il-sung amid growing tensions on the divided peninsula over its nuclear and missile program.

"If the United States wages reckless provocation against us, our revolutionary power will instantly counter with an annihilating strike, and we will respond to full-out war with full-out war and to nuclear war with our style of nuclear strike warfare", Choe Ryong Hae said. Thousands of soldiers from the Korean People's Army marched alongside weaponry and tanks through Kim Il-sung Square as current leader Kim Jong-Un watched on.

State television showed what appeared to be several KN-08 missiles rolled out on trucks at the parade. In these conditions, Pyongyang declares its intention to strengthen its nuclear-missile potential amid the aggressive policy of the United States.

President Donald Trump this month dispatched a warship fleet towards the Korean Peninsula as the U.S. weighed retaliation for any missile or nuclear test.

As tensions between North Korea and the USA rose in recent days, there had been speculations that Kim Jong Un would conduct a nuclear test or other major military test.

North Korea did, however, hold a large military parade on the annual Day of the Sun celebration, in what The Washington Post described as "a defiant show of force in front of the world".

An official from South Korea's Defence Ministry could not immediately confirm whether any of the rockets paraded represented a new type of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM), the Associated Press reported.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un waves during the Saturday military parade.

"If China can help us do that, it'll be great", White House spokesman Sean Spicer said.

Policy detail was not released, but the sentiment chimes with secretary of state Rex Tillerson's previous statement that the Obama administration's policy of "strategic patience" with the North Korean State was over.

Vice minister Han Song Ryol said in Pyongyang the country was ready to use its "powerful nuclear deterrent" if President Trump continues to provoke North Korea.

The comments came as North Korea marked the 105th anniversary of the birth of its founding president, Kim Il-sung. That threat, however, has been made numerous times in the past.

USA officials said on Friday that Trump's advisers weighed a range of ideas for how to get North Korea to abandon its nuclear program.

The move, coupled with the USA retaliatory strikes last week against Syria over a chemical weapons attack on civilians, and the depoyment of a huge bomb against IS positions in Afghanistan earlier this week, touched off fear in South Korea that the United States was preparing for military action against the North.

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